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the feventh volume of that publication. The Effay and thTranflation are accompanied with the Notes of a third perfone age, and an anonymous one, who paffes for the Editor of the whole, and who feems to be a hopeful apprentice to the manufacturers of the New Philofophy. This fkulker appears to be employed chiefly to throw dirt (and that of the most fetid quality) upon fhining reputations which stand in the way of the Parifian philofophers; and as the yet unpublished Memoirs of the late famous J. J. Rouffeau are fuppofed to contain a great number of fecret anecdotes, that reflect the higheft difhonour on thefe Sages, our Editor loads the memory of the Citizen of Geneva with invectives and reproaches which furpafs, in acrimony and vindictive bitternefs and fury, any thing we have seen of the kind. A living dog (fays Solomon) has the advantage over a dead lion:
As to the ESSAY of M. DIDEROT, it contains, like the other writings of that Author, a glaring mixture of good and bad: of brilliant thoughts and obfcure reasonings-of fentences that dart from the imagination with the energy of lightning, and cloudy periods of metaphyfical rhetoric that convey either no ideas or falfe ones. But the moft reprehenfible part of this performance is the moral fophiftry with which Mr. D. apologizes for the vices of Seneca, which were neither few in number, nor of a kind that deferved indulgence. If it should even be allowed that Suilius, Dion Caffius, Xiphilinus, and St. Evremond, have been chargeable with exaggeration in their cenfures of the character and conduct of Seneca, yet we cannot approve of our Effayift's manner of refuting thefe cenfures, by calling the firft a profligate loaded with crimes; the fecond, a madman; the third a wretched Monk; and the laft, an ignorant epicurean. We are ftill lefs edified when we hear the Philofopher of Paris alleviating Seneca's adulterous connexion with Julia the daughter of Germanicus, by telling us for footh, that the Philofopher had his moment of vanity-his day of weakness; and, indeed, we think that the various accufations brought against the ftoic philofopher are answered with the fame corrupt levity. Though it should not be true, that Seneca was an accomplice with Nero, in the aflaffination of his mother Agrippina, though it were even falfe, that, knowing the defign, he did not do what was in his power to prevent it, yet it is certainly true, that, after the abominable deed was done, he employed all his dexterity and art to excufe it, in a letter which he was bafe enough to write to the fenate by the Emperor's order; and when the Philofopher of Paris tells us that Seneca took this step to prevent farther enormities from the tumults and confiracies which the murder of Agrippina was likely to produce, we wonder at his fimplicity; as if any methods of art or prudence could prevent
tumults and confpiracies when fuch an outrageous monfter as Nero held the helm of government; as if any thing but the extinction of the monster could have given a moment of tranquillity, or real fecurity to the Roman people.
MONTHLY CATALOGUE, For APRIL, 1779.
Art. 11. The Carmen Seculare of Horace, tranflated into English Verse. By the Rev. W. Tasker, A. B. Author of the Ode to the Warlike Genius of Britain,-Elegy on Garrick, &c. 4to. I S. Dodfley, Becket, &c. 1779.
HOUGH the learned have, in general, found Sanadon's ar
Carmen Seculare, to be more ingenious than folid, yet it is not wonderful that Sig. Baretti and Monf. Philidor, whofe chief object was to prefent the Public with a new mufical entertainment, should have adopted the idea of Sanadon, which, by comprehending additional matter, gave more fcope to the compofer, and afforded at least a longer, if not more rational, amufement to the auditor: nor is it wonderful, confidered in that light, that the Rev. Mr. Tafker fhould inform us that it is Mr. Baretti's edition, without any variation, that is here attempted to be tranflated.' He has, accordingly, fol lowed that edition down to the Epilogus Baretti, as Mr. Tasker calls it, but rather (as we are told it should be ftyled) the Epilogus JOHN
It is lamentable, however, to fee genius run to feed; and as Mr. Tasker certainly has difcovered fome poetical talent in his other lyric pieces, we are forry to find him ever chafing the new-blown bubble of the day," and availing himself of little temporary expedients, which, we fear, will ultimately be attended with as little profit as reputation. As to the prefent verfion, it is not, in our opinion, calculated to afford inftruction or entertainment either to the learned or unlearned reader.
Art. 12. Verfes to the Memory of David Garrick. Spoken as
Of this elegant and affecting tribute, defervedly paid by the theatre to the memory of the deceased Rofcius, the following lines may ferve as a small specimen :
The GRACE of ACTION-the adapted MIEN
Th' EXPRESSIVE GLANCE whofe fubtle comment draws
GESTURE that marks, with force and feeling fraught,
As light from gems, affumes a brighter ray
But ftrike the frame-and as they strike expire;
Its fragrance charms the fenfe, and blends with air." Some particular lines and expreffions might, perhaps, afford matter of cavil, and the fubject may, to fome feverer readers, appear rather wire-drawn ; but, on the whole, we may venture to pronouncê this monody, or rather elegy, to be the most polished piece of verfification we remember to have feen fince the Isis of Mr. Mafon. Art. 13. A Monody on the Death of David Garrick, Efq. To
which is added, Charity, a Paraphrafe on the Thirteenth Chapter of the First Epistle of St. Paul to the Corinthians.-Poems written for the Vase at Bath Eafton. By William Meyler. 4to. I s. Brown.
The verfes on the death of Mr. Garrick are not the worst, nor the beft, of the various poetic performances that have appeared on the fame fubject. The verification of St. Paul's encomium on Charity are on a par with the generality of the Bath Eafton poetry. Art. 14. A Monody to the Memory of David Garrick, Efq. 8vo.
6 d. Harrifon. -A well-meant attempt; but the Author does not completely poffefs the art
- at once to give and merit praife.' Art. 15. Ode to the Naval Officers of Great Britain. Written, immediately after the Trial of Admiral Keppel, Feb. 11, 1779. By W. Mafon, M. A. 4to. 6d. Cadell.
This occafional Pindaric is meant to deliver the political creed of its Author, at whofe call the Genius of the Atlantic rifes from the deep, and expoftulates with his fifter fovereign of the wave," Britannia: counselling her to withdraw her fleets from America, and to fend them, under the full command of Keppel, against France. The following lines are the most pathetic part of the Atlantic deity's invocation to his kindred goddefs:
"Queen of the ifles! with empire crown'd,
Wide as my waves could waft thy name,
Thy wafted wealth, thy widows fighis,
Befpeak thy caufe unblett, thy councils vain."
Art. 16. The Patriot Divine to the Female Hiftorian; an Elegiac Epiftle. To which is added, The Lady's Reply; or, a modest Plea for the Rights of Widows. 4to. 2 s. Fielding and Walker.
More pleasantry, at the expence of the Rev. Dr. Wilson and the celebrated Female Historian, on the lady's fecond marriage. The epiftle here written for the venerable Divine, is an imitation of Ovid's Oenone to Paris; and is executed with spirit and elegance. The Lady's Reply is entitled, The Female Hiftorian to the Patriot Divine; a Didactic Epifle ;-and is equally ingenious and fatirical, with the elegiac poem which is fuppofed to have occafioned it. But, are not thefe young graceless fons of Apollo (for juvenile blades we muft fuppofe them) taking freedoms with living characters, which ought no more to be allowed in a copy of verfes than in a dramatic exhibition? Art. 17. The Female Patriot: An Epiftle from C―t— M-c-y to the Rev. Dr. W-1-n, on her late Marriage. With Critical, Hiftorical, and Philofophical Notes and Illuftrations. 4to. 1 s. 6 d. Bew. 1779.
More yet!-Still more poetic impertinence!" Ye vile pack of vagabonds! what do ye mean?”
Art. 18. A Pocket of Profe and Verfe; being a Selection of the Literary Productions of Alexander Kellet, Efq. 8vo. 38. Dilly. 1778.
Mr. Kellet's mifcellany will afford an agreeable amusement to readers who can be fatisfied with a mediocrity of abilities in the Writer. Perhaps the genius of the prefent Author will entitle him to rank as a poet of the Second rate. In his profe compofitions he manifefts a confiderable share of good fenfe and literary improvement. Art. 19. Delineation, a Poem. 4to. Is. 6d. Kearfly. 1779.
A rhiming invective againft fome well-known political characters among the Great; particularly the gentlemen in oppofition. The Bard feems to have found an old pen of Sir Richard Blackmore's — but he fhould have mended it.
Art. 20. Nereus's Prophecy: a Sea-piece, sketched off Ushant, on the memorable Morning of the 28th of July, 1778. 4to. 1 s. 6d. Bew.
This invective piece of poetry feems (from fimilitude of style) to come from that violent fon of Oppofition [a Court Reviewer would fay Faction] to whom the Public are indebted for thofe ungracious performances, Royal Perfeverance, Tyranny the worst Taxation, Epiftle to W —m E of M-f-d, Capt. Parolles at Minden, &c. all which we have cenfured, purely from our averfion to literary intemperance, and perfonal invective, which only tend to breed ill-humour, foment discord, inflame malignity, and render bad men callous;—and which were never known to produce REFORMATION -the only end a moral writer ought to have in view.
See the 28th Article of our Catalogue for February, and the 19th in that for March.
Art. 21. The Seer; or, the American Prophecy. A Poem. 8vo. 2 s. 6d. Harrison.
The American Se'er is full brother to Nereus, the old Sea-boy who figures in the preceding Article.
Art. 22. The Female Congress; or, the Temple of Cotytto: A
Mock Heroic Poem, in Four Cantos. 4to. 2s. 6d. Davies. 1779.
In an advertisement prefixed to this poem, as an apology for the fubject and the manner in which it is treated, are the following paragraphs:
Where the manners happen to be very scandalous, and the prevailing vices of the age of a very impure die, fatire must often rise difcoloured from its fubject, and seem to border nearly on licentioufnefs. Juvenal, with the best intentions in the world, has let fall many things fhocking enough to a modeft ear. In condemning fatire for its freedom, people are too apt to forget its end, and the perfons to whom it is addreft; and, at the very moment when it is reflecting the image of deformity, they are angry that the figure is indecent, or ungraceful. Satire is not intended for the innocent and` fpotlefs, but the vicious and contaminated, to whom pictures of depravity are no novelty; were it always to preserve such decorum and chaftity as not to difguft the former, it might want force and poignancy to ftrike the latter; and fo facrifice the reformation of thofe to whom it is neceffary, to the fear of difpleafing those to whom it is unneceffary. Should the chafte virgin at any time meet with expreffions or images in the works of the fatirift, that wound her delicacy, let her recollect, that the painting was not defigned for her inspection, and that it is exhibited only as an object of deteftation and contempt.
The following sheets are the produce of an idle week, stolen from ferious occupations, and were at firft written merely for my own amufement; but all our literary amusements, at least, should be directed to fome useful purpose; and I hope I may be allowed, without vanity, to affert that, in the following lines, I fincerely meant to ferve the cause of virtue and religion, by expofing to ridicule, the parade of profligacy, and more culpable fimulation of godliness.'
From thefe extracts the Reader may poffibly expect a more indelicate work than that now before us. It is, however, too truly reprehenfible in that refpect; and, from that circumftance alone, were its poetical merit fuperior, muft (like the Times of Churchill) fall into obfcurity. The fable and characters of the Female Congress are not conceived or expreffed in that happy vein of fancy and ridicule, that diftinguishes our most popular pieces of mock-heroic poetry; but the numbers are, in general, above mediocrity, and the Author appears to be a found claffical scholar.
Art. 23. Coalition, a Farce, founded on Facts, and lately performed, with the Approbation, and under the joint Inspection, of the Managers of the Theatres Royal. 8vo. 1s. Brown. 1779. The managers of the two theatres royal of Drury Lane and CoventGarden are themselves the subject of this farce. The facts, on which